IPrime Faculty Projects Included in $3.7M IREE Renewable Energy Award

Three IPrime partnership program faculty are part of an award of over $3.7 million from The Initiative for Renewable Energy and the Environment (IREE) for nine renewable energy projects at the University of Minnesota.

The multi-year projects focus on a wide-range of topics including solar energy, next generation biofuels, materials for increased energy efficiency, solar recycling of carbon dioxide to produce renewable fuels, life-cycle analysis of biofuels and more.

Faculty members, graduate students and post-docs, undergraduates and research scientists at University of Minnesota campuses around the state will be involved with the projects.

The projects selected to receive IREE large grants include:

Engineering of a Multi-Species Fermentation Platform for Biofuel Production. Project lead: Claudia Schmidt-Dannert of Biochemistry, Molecular Biology and Biophysics & IPrime research member, Biocatalysis and Biotechnology program.

New Environmentally Benign Sulfides for Sustainable Large-Scale Photovoltaics. Project lead: Eray Aydil of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science & IPrime program co-leader, Renewable Energy Materials.

Converting Sunlight into Electricity with High Efficiency Organic Solar Cells. Project lead: Daniel Frisbie of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science & IPrime program leader, Organic Optoelectronic Interfaces.

Solar Recycling of CO2 to Fuels, Project lead: Jane Davidson, Mechanical Engineering

Processing DDGS into Biofuels and Other Value-Added Products; Pilot Development and Commercialization, Project lead: Pavel Krasutsky, Natural Resources Research Institute

Pumped Hydro Energy Storage (PHES) Using Abandoned Mine Pits on the Mesabi Iron Range of Minnesota, Project lead: Donald Fosnacht, Natural Resources Research Institute

Materials Innovation to Enable Solar Home Heating in Cold Climates, Project lead: Susan Mantell, Mechanical Engineering

Next-Generation Biofuels and the Ecosystem Services They Provide: Sustainability and the Biomass Production Landscape, Project lead: Jason Hill, Institute on the Environment

Performance and Emissions of a Second Generation Biofuel - Dimethyl Ether (DME), Project lead: David Kittelson, Mechanical Engineering

The U of M's Initiative for Renewable Energy and the Environment, a signature program of the Institute on the Environment, promotes statewide economic development; sustainable, healthy and diverse ecosystems; and national energy security through development of bio-based and other renewable resources and processes.